I have been listening to Alter Bridge’s fourth album Fortress for a few months now, and I have to say I am disappointed….. disappointed that more people aren’t talking about this album, and that it isn’t getting more praise.
Fortress may be Alter Bridge’s most complex album yet, and quite possibly their best. Mark Tremonti shows his metal roots, by crafting one of the heaviest Alter Bridge albums yet. His guitar work seems to get better and better with every album. On Fortress, Tremtonti’s riffs are heavy enough to please metal heads, but not so heavy to scare off Alter Bridge’s constantly growing fan base.
Myles Kennedy probably gets more press while signing with Slash, but he should get a lot more attention for his performance on Fortress. One word describes his vocals on this album, brilliant! Kennedy’s vocals are constantly soaring to new heights, and no matter how heavy the music becomes, his voice complements Tremonti’s playing perfectly. There are times when Kennedy’s range gives me goose bumps. In example the song “Calm the Fire” starts off with a brief acoustic in which Kennedy pushes his voice at high octave but at a slower tempo. The song transforms into a fantastic rocker that to my ears is simply amazing! This is easily my favorite track on the album, but Fortress is full of great stuff like this.
If you miss songs like “Addicted to Pain”, “Cry of Achilles”, “Bleed it Dry”, or “Waters Rising” you are really missing out on some of the best heavy tracks of 2013 and of Alter Bridge’s career. Check this one out!!
01. Cry of Achilles
02. Addicted to Pain
03. Bleed It Dry
05. The Uninvited
06. Peace Is Broken
07. Calm The Fire
08. Waters Rising
09. Farther Than The Sun
10. Cry A River
11. All Ends Well
Alter Bridge is:
Myles Kennedy – Vocals, Guitar
Mark Tremonti – Guitars, Vocals
Brian Marshall – Drums
Scott Phillips – Bass
Man oh mercy, I have always been a fan of German metal, and I always anticipate new material from Gammy Ray.. I can always expect quality releases from this band, and Gamma Ray’s latest opus Empire of the Undead is no exception.
Heavy Metal can not be stopped, and Empire of the Undead is living proof. The home, rehearsal space, and meeting point for Gamma ray, and many metal bands throughout Germany, had burned down leaving much of its contents in ruins. The Empire Of The Undead masters managed to make it through unscathed.
Thank God it dead, as the band’s 11th album, Empire of the Undead is packed full of amazing solos, great vocals, and excellent metal tracks clocking in at over an hour in length. While Gamma Ray hasn’t completely abandoned the Power metal format, to my ears, Empire of the Unead is more of a pure heavy metal album with hints of influence of Judas Priest in the music. The songs are heavy and fast, but at a pace that you will find yourself singing along. Kai Hansen delivers fantastic metal riffs that need to be played at high volume to fully appreciate it. (If you play this in a car beware, it may be detrimental to your driving record.)
My favorites on this album are “Hellbent”, “Pale Rider”, “Master of Confusion”, the title track “Empire of the Undead”, and the (possibly) Queen influenced “Time for Deliverance”.
Empire of the Undead will be released April 15th in the United States. Every metal fan ought to give this album a listen. It is easily one of Gamma Ray’s best albums yet and it gets better with every listen. Don’t miss this!
Get it at Amazon.com here!
03. Pale Rider
04. Born To Fly
05. Master of Confusion
06. Empire of the Undead
07. Time for Deliverance
10. I Will Return
Gamma Ray is:
Kai Hansen – rhythm & lead guitar, lead vocals
Henjo Richter – lead & rhythm guitar, keyboards
Dirk Schlächter – bass
Michael Ehré – drums
Admittedly, I was nervous when I heard that the new Against Me! record was a concept album about a transgender prostitute with themes of gender dysphoria. Being a fan of the band, I felt that this was their first album I would not relate to. I don’t know anything about the transgender community and I couldn’t see how I would understand someone going through these types of changes in life. Add to that a new producer, a new bass player, and a new drummer, and I felt that it was a recipe for disaster. Yet, after hearing “Fuckmylife666” and “Talking Transgender Dysphoria Blues” on the internet, I knew that this was an album I had to own. Buying Transgender Dysphoria Blues was one of the best decisions I’ve made this year.
Transgender Dysphoria Blues opens with the fantastic “Talking Transgender Dysphoria Blues,” a hard rocking song that immediately opens the eyes of people, like myself, who know little or nothing of what it is like to go through a change of life at that magnitude. The opening drum beats immediately suck the listener in, the blitzing guitar chords hook them, and once Laura Jane Grace starts singing, it is clear that this could be the best Against Me! song ever recorded. Grace sings about the pain of coming out transgender, the desire to just be accepted for who you are, and the pain of being judged everywhere you turn. I immediately realized that my ignorant thoughts of not being able to relate to this album were wrong. While I don’t know the pain of coming out transgender, I do know the pain of not being accepted for who you are and the pain of desire related to wanting to belong. Needless to say, “Talking Transgender Dysphoria Blues” received several plays before I even made it to track number two.
The record takes off from there delivering fine music from start to finish. New drummer Atom Willard makes his presence known immediately, and Laura Jane Grace’s voice is in fine form throughout the album. And even though the band changed the entire rhythm section (drummer Jay Weinberg and bassist Andrew Seward left between albums), both new drummer Atom Willard and new bass guitarist Inge Johansson are able to keep exceptional time and create tight pockets for Grace and guitarist James Bowman to perform over. While these four bandmates have only been together a short time, the results sound as if they have performed with one another for their entire career.
Transgender Dysphoria Blues contains a lot of fast, powerful, hard rocking, punk songs that deliver just the right amount of emotion at exactly the right time. Songs like “Unconditional Love” and “Black Me Out” are bound to go down as Against Me! classics and will be fan favorites in no time. On this album, the band never strays from what they do best, which is making short, blitzkrieg, hard rock songs.
If you like your hard rock mixed with punk and thrash, in addition to an us against the world mentality, you will love Transgender Dysphoria Blues. While not the best Against Me! album ever recorded, it comes very close. If you’ve never listened to Against Me! before, this is a great album to discover the band.
- Talking Transgender Dysphoria Blues
- True Trans Soul Rebel
- Unconditional Love
- Drinking With The Jocks
- Osama Bin Laden As The Crucified Christ
- Dead Friend
- Two Coffins
- Paralytic States
- Black Me Out
Against Me! Is:
Laura Jane Grace – Vocals, Guitar
James Bowman – Guitar
Atom Willard – Drums
Inge Johansson – Bass
Reviewed by Ryo Vie
Emperors and Elephants sound is influenced by 90’s hard rock scene. The band wears their influences on their sleeves, on their new album Devil In The Lake. On the first listen, I immediately noticed the Alice in Chains influence but found their music to be completely refreshing. If you are expecting another album full of down tuned guitars, think again. There are a lot of infectious riffs to be found on this album. Emperors and Elephants recently added Randy “The Arsonist” Cooper from Texas Hippie Coalition to their ranks, and his playing mixed with Jeph Stiph’s gives E+E, a pretty fantastic guitar tandem. If the opening track “Bring It Down” doesn’t make you a quick believer, “Who Are You” will certainly drive the point home.
Devil In The Lake has a bunch of radio ready tracks. Some songs are pretty heavy, some tone it down to allow Jesse Andrews’ voice to shine. When Andrews’ voice is the focal point in the music, you will find that he has a pretty awesome voice, and he can hold his own with some of the best modern rock singers out there today.
My Favorite songs on Devil In the Lake include “Bring It Down”, “Who Are You”, “Hit of Red”, “You and I” and the band’s hard rockin’ cover of the Chris Isaac classic “Wicked Game”.
Emperors and Elephants is easily one of the best new modern hard rock bands I have listened to in 2014. If you are a fan of bands like Alice in Chains, Shinedown and Pop Evil, do yourself a favor, and check out Devil In The Lake. I think you are going to like Emperors and Elephants a lot. I sure do!
01. Bring It Down
02. Who Are You
03. Your Will
04. Man of God
06. Hit of Red
07. Deep Sleep
09. Wicked Game
10. Ghost In The Mirror
11. You And I
12. M.oG. – Dupermang Re-Mix
Emperors and Elephants are:
Jesse Andrews – Vocals
Jason Meudt – drums
Jeph Stiph – Guitars
Randy “The Arsonist” Cooper – Guitars
Ron “Stoppable” Vanders – Bass
It seems like every couple of years or so, there is a new modern rock act to catch my attention. In the case of Age of Days (formerly known as Age of Daze), they aren’t new at all. The band has been around since 2005, and their latest release Radioactivity is their second album. Their first album, Hollywood Ending, was released in 2008. Judging from the songs on Radioactivity, I need to seek out Age of Days’ first album asap.
Radioactivity is packed with a bunch of radio ready singles that could spawn a bunch of hits for these Canadian rockers. Age of Days sound may not be original, but in their music, I hear a great blend of bands like Theory of a Deadman, Nickelback, My Darkest Days and Hinder. In fact, Sal Costa (ex-My Darkest Days) co-wrote and played guitars on the song “Now or Never” along with Hinder’s Cody Hansen on drums. Their music might be derivative of these other modern hard rock acts, but with an album as good as Radioactivity, I could care less. Age of Days have crafted a bunch of catchy tunes, that with a little bit of luck, could help make them a very successful rock act in the U.S. and beyond.
Radioactivity has a good mixture of modern pop rock/hard rock, and there isn’t a bad song in the bunch. Of course, my favorites on Radioactivity are the hard rockin’ numbers “Bombs Away”, “Justify”, “I Did It For Love”, “Ready to Go” and “All I Know”.
Radioactivity is an album that I can listen to, from beginning to end without the need to skip songs. I have enjoyed this album greatly, and I think you will too.
You can pick up Radioactivity at Amazon.com & at iTunes. Check it out!
Age of Days is:
Tim Morrison – vocals, guitar
Matt McLaughlin – bass, backing vocals
Brent Alvey – lead guitar
Mike Langford – drums
A couple of months ago, when my good friend Ryo Vie was in town, we did what most rabid music fans do. We went binge shopping at the local Cincinnati music stores. While rummaging through one of my favorite local haunts, Shake It Records, I stumbled upon the band Brand New Machine. Shake it Records had a listening station where I could hear the CD, The Devil Made Me Do It. After listening to the first three songs, I knew I wasn’t leaving the store without buying this CD.
I was dumbfounded that I didn’t know about this band already. I thought maybe I overlooked a press release, or got them mixed up with another band. Lets face it, there is Brand New, New Medicine, Machinehead, Brand New Sin, and several other bands with similar sounding names. Brand New Machine sets themselves apart by offering fans a classic sound with a modern twist. On The Devil Made Me Do It, I can hear a mix of KISS, Guns N’ Roses and maybe a little bit of Foo Fighters. This is one of those releases that you can listen to from beginning to end without the need to skip tracks. Their sound really works, and there isn’t a bad song on the CD.
Once I opened the CD booklet, I quickly discovered that Brand New Machine’s guitarist is none other than Michael Thomas. The same Michael Thomas who I have seen play with Faster Pussycat and Beautiful Creatures in the past. Not only does the band have a kickass guitar player, but they have one of the best new hard rock singers I have heard in a while. Front man, Brantly Thompson delivers the goods with his whiskey stained vocals on The Devil Made Me Do It.
One way or another, I was destined to find this CD, I am glad that I did. I love this disc, and I am pretty sure you will too!
1. Here I Am
2. Girls Like You
3. Devil Made Me Do It
4. Dust in The Sky
5. Here and Gone Today
6. Living For Another Day
7. Always on the Run
8. Blackout Overdose
9. Lettin’ It Roll
10. What Do I Gotta Do
11. Let Me Go
Brand New Machine is:
Brantly Thompson – Vocals
Seven Antonopoulos – Drums/Vocals
Wiley Oliver – Bass/Vocals
Michael Thomas – Guitars/Vocals
When it comes to death/doom metal I am not a fan of the vocals at all. Usually the music is stellar, but the growling, gravel eating vocals destroy the song for me. When it comes to Five Finger Death Punch, I never gave them many listens. I had heard one or two songs on the radio and thought they were okay, but the growling vocals immediately had me stereotype the band and not explore them more. When it comes to The Wrong Side Of Heaven And The Righteous Side Of Hell Volume One, I am a huge fan. Five Finger Death Punch has won me over and I will definitely be seeking out their back catalog.
Having not listened to much Five Finger Death Punch, I did not know what to expect when I slipped in my ear buds and fired up The Wrong Side Of Heaven And The Righteous Side Of Hell. What I received was amazing music that blew my senses away. It was a symphony of spectacular sounds drifting through my eardrums and creating a grin on my face. Nothing brings me more joy than discovering a new (to me) band that I want to listen to over and over again.
“Lift Me Up” gets the disc started and it was this song that captured me instantly. There is so much happening on this one little song that it causes an explosion in the brain. With a cataclysm of sound, “Lift Me Up” is a terrific album opener, especially if it is one of the first times you are listening to Five Finger Death Punch. The song drew me in immediately and by the time it was completed, I was hooked and had to hear more.
“Dot Your Eyes” is another excellent song that just demands you jump around, scream and shout. Ivan Moody’s voice is strong and the rhythmic beats and blistering guitar solos will find fists flying in the air on first listen. The power that “Dot Your Eyes” delivers is unrivaled. The song demands attention and action. This would be the perfect song to work out to, rally behind, or start your day with. It’s an instant shot of energy and emotion and one of the best songs that The Wrong Side Of Heaven And The Righteous Side Of Hell has to offer.
My favorite song on the album is “Anywhere But Here.” The song is just magnificent. It revisits a familiar theme of what would you do if there was no tomorrow, but Five Finger Death Punch put their own spin on it. Most songs dealing with the theme of today being your last day on Earth discuss how the final moments should be enjoyed and treasured. Five Finger’s version is a little darker. “Anywhere But Here” approaches the world ending by proclaiming that no tears would be shed and that being anywhere but here but would be for the best. The narrator of the song is clearly not happy with where he is in life and it is time to get out and move on to something better. Throw in a magnificent Jason Hook guitar solo and some fantastic drum beats from Jeremy Spencer and it is easy to see why “Anywhere But Here” is one of the best tracks on this record.
Sad as it is to say, “Mama Said Knock You Out,” is a poor cover of the classic LL Cool J jam. The idea of a hard rock cover of this stupendous hip hop song gave me high hopes, but Five Finger just didn’t deliver as crisply as I had hoped. It is but one of two weaknesses on the album. The follow up song, “Diary Of A Deadman,” is not great either. In short, it’s a blatant rip off of Sixx AM’s Heroin Diaries. Thankfully, these are the last two songs on the record, so there are only two bad songs to endure. The other 9 tracks are flat out stellar.
It’s also worth noting that Five Finger Death Punch included 2 different versions of 3 songs. The first version was their own recording and the other version included guest vocals by Jamey Jasta (“Dot Your Eyes”), Max Cavalera (“I.M. Sin”), and Maria Brink (“Anywhere But Here”). It was interesting to hear the two different takes on each of these songs, and it has added some replay value to the record.
Overall, The Wrong Side Of Heaven And The Righteous Side Of Hell Volume One is a superb record that has me waiting in earnest for volume 2. If you are yearning for a modern rock sound with a real hardcore edge, I highly recommend this record. It has made me a Five Finger Death Punch fan.
Rating: Out of 10
- Lift Me Up (featuring Rob Halford)
- Watch You Bleed
- Wrong Side Of Heaven
- Burn MF
- I.M. Sin
- Anywhere But Here
- Dot Your Eyes
- M.I.N.E. (End This Way)
- Mama Said Knock You Out
- Diary Of A Deadman
- I.M. Sin (featuring Max Cavalera)
- Anywhere But Here (featuring Maria Brink)
- Dot Your Eyes (featuring Jamey Jasta)
Five Finger Death Punch Is:
Ivan Moody – Lead Vocals
Zoltan Bathory – Rhythm Guitar
Jeremy Spencer – Drums
Jason Hook – Lead Guitar, Backing Vocals
Chris Kael – Lead Guitar, Backing Vocals
Reviewed by Ryo Vie
Wow! I just finished listening and then listening and listening again to the new Avenged Sevenfold album Hail To the King. I wasn’t sure what to expect with the band’s new album. I was sure it would be good, but this album isn’t good, it is outfreakinstanding.
Hail to the King is the first album without Avenged Sevenfold’s drummer Jimmy “The Rev” Sullivan. “The Rev” was always such a driving force in A7X’s music, I was wondering how the band would handle his tragic loss, and how it would affect their music. A7X’s music has definitely changed, but it has changed for the better in my opinion.
What A7X has done is change their tempo, and completely move away from their metalcore roots. The band has crafted a bunch of songs that could easily be staples on rock radio everywhere. The change of tempo doesn’t mean that Synnester Gates and Zacky Vengeance don’t play their asses off. There is some fine guitar work on this album, and I hear little bits of Megadeth, Metallica and even Guns N’ Roses influence in the music on Hail To the King. Kudos to drummer Arin Ilejay, who does a find job behind the kit on this record.
The first four songs “Shepherd of Fire”, “Hail To The King”, “Doing Time” and “This Means War” really set the stage for this album, by delivering several excellent, hard rockin’ numbers that will have you hooked after the first listen. While these are my favorites, the great songs don’t end there.
I like the creepiness of “Requiem”. I look for Damien Omen to show up every time I listen to this one. “Heretic” is one catchy rocker that I would love to see A7X perform live. I love the lyrics on this song. “Acid Rain” is one of those deep cuts on “Hail To the King” that will keep me spinning this disc for a long time. I love the haunting piano melodies on this song.
This may be the most mainstream A7X album yet. It is rare when an album exceeds my expectations, but I believe this is Avenged Sevenfold’s best album yet. I thought some fans would be unhappy with A7X’s current direction, but judging from he fact that the album is # 1 in the U.S., Canada and the UK, most A7X fans must think it is pretty cool too!
If you buy one version of the album, get the Deluxe version of the album, which will give you two cool A7X coasters, and a password for a free download of the bonus track “St. James” which is a pretty cool song too!
I won’t be surprised to find “Hail To the King” on top of many best of 2013 lists. It really is that good! Check it out!
Rating: Out of 10
01. Shepherd of Fire
02. Hail To the King
03. Doing Time
04. This Means War
06. Crimson Day
08. Coming Home
10. Acid Rain
Bonus Track (as a download from the A7X website)
Avenged Sevenfold is:
M. Shadows – Vocals
Synyster Gates – Lead Guitar
Zacky Vengeance – Rhythm Guitar
Johnny Christ – Bass
Arin Ilejay – Drums
Don’t judge a book by a cover. That is the first thing I think of when I listen to North Carolina Alt rockers, Another Lost Year. You see, the winged skull on the cover of Another Lost year’s album Better Days would have me believe that ALY is a metal band. I would not consider ALY’s music metal, but alternative hard rock more in vain of Candlebox, Live and Three Doors Down. They might be a little heavier than those bands, but when I listen to Better Days, these are the bands that come to mind.
Another Lost Year’s music has grown on me quite a bit over the last few weeks. There are several songs that could easily be radio singles on this album and two ( “War On The Inside” and “Writing On The Wall”) already have been.
Clinton Cunanan has a pretty solid voice, and his voice help propel my favorite tracks on Better Days including “War On The Inside”, “Broken” and “Runaway”. I don’t like it when they tread into screamo territory, but there is very little of that on this album.
Better Days also features a great duet with singer Lish Rimer on the song “Angels”. This song ought to be a big hit for Another Lost year. Check it out below!
Overall, Better Days is a solid album, and will likely get a lot of mileage on the radio for ALY. If you check out one new band in 2013, you could do a lot worse than Another Lost Year. Check them out on facebook at this link.
Rating: Out of 10
01. Better Days
02. War On The Inside
03. All That We Are
05. What I Deserve
08. Last Goodbye
09. Writing On The Wall
10. Come And Gone
11. Forgot About Us
Another Lost Year is:
Dave Whitaker – Guitars
Clinton Cunanan – Vocals & Guitar
Adam Hall – Guitars & Vocals
Lee Norris – Drums
Jason Lovelace – Bass
Legendary. It is the only word that fits the band Black Sabbath! It is mind-blowing to me that Black Sabbath has been recording metal music off & on for over 40 years now. Their music has stood against the test of time. There have been many imitators, but no band has been able to reproduce the amazing music that Black Sabbath has put out over the years. With that being said, Black Sabbath’s latest album 13, is not what I would call legendary, but it is a great bookend to what could easily be the final chapter in the careers of this amazing metal band.
Before the release of 13, I had not listened to a single song from the album, so I had no idea what to expect. After the first play, the only song that grabbed my attention initially was “God Is Dead”. On the first play, I thought, this could easily be a staple for Sabbath’s live set. It is a very classic sounding Sabbath song and easily one of my favorites on the album. I struggled at first to find another song that really made an impact on me, but I kept listening, and then a funny thing happened, I couldn’t QUIT listening.
13 really started sinking in after the second listen, and I started to enjoy it more. “End of the Beginning” does a great job re-capturing the vibe of the awe-inspiring 1970 debut Black Sabbath. Tony Iommi is absolutely riffdiculous. On 13, he has once again put together a stellar performance, creating a bunch of new riffs from his endless bag of tricks. It is his guitar work that will make you want to give this album endless spins. Geezer Butler deserves a strong mention here as well. His powerful bass is the driving force behind this music. It is awesome to listen to someone who can truly play, and not just remain hidden in the background playing rhythm. His deep and sometimes jangly bass riffs are amazing. Geezer does not always get the credit he deserves. It is my opinion that his playing on 13 is stellar.
As much as I love Ozzy Osbourne, I didn’t think his vocals were as strong or as aggressive as past releases. I get the fact that Ozzy is 64 years old, but I was hoping that producer Rick Rubin would push him a little further than he did. With that being said, Ozzy’s vocals aren’t bad, just not as good as they have been in the past.
As much as I am disappointed that Bill Ward was not involved in the making of this album, I have to give credit to Brad Wilk from Rage Against the Machine. He provided the thunder for this album, and I truly believe he did an outstanding job.
There are three of songs that have really grown on me since I started listening to 13, and those are “Loner”, “Zeitgeist” and “Live Forever”. “Loner” is maybe the most upbeat track on the album, while “Zeitgeist” is the slowest. “Zeitgeist” may just be one of the most different sounding Sabbath tracks of all time. That is the song’s pure brilliance. Iommi nearly treads into Eric Clapton territory with his playing on this one, and Brad Wilk plays the bongos throughout this song. “Zeitgeist” is clever and cool. Metal purists may turn their nose at this one, but I appreciate the creativity, and outstanding musicianship. I love the chorus on “Live Forever”. “Well I don’t want to live forever, but I don’t want to die….”. This lyric has really stuck in my head.
If you buy one version of this album, I highly recommend the bonus version (available at Best Buy) with four bonus tracks.
The bonus track “Methademic” is nearly worth the price of admission all by itself. This is a killer up tempo number that should have been on the main disc. I don’t know why this one got picked over. It is better than some of the songs on the main disc. This is a song that you won’t want to miss. (Check it out below!) “Pariah” is also an outstanding tune that should not be missed.
Overall, 13 is a solid, but not spectacular album. The more I listen to it, the more I have grown to like and appreciate it. It may not be perfect, but it does have good song writing, and outstanding musicianship. Black Sabbath fans should rush to get this, and all other metal fans should give this one a chance.
Rating: Out of 10
01. End of The Beginning
02. God is Dead?
05. Age of Reason
06. Live Forever
07. Damaged Soul
08. Dear Father
* Bonus Tracks
02. Peace of Mind
04. Naivete In Black
Black Sabbath is:
Tony Iommi – lead guitar
Geezer Butler – bass guitar
Ozzy Osbourne – lead vocals
Brad Wilk – drums
Are YOU ready to ROCK?! Airbourne certainly is, and with their third album Black Dog Barking, the band has raised the bar high as far as rock albums in 2013 goes.
While Running Wild put Airbourne on the Rock and Roll map, and No Guts, No Glory proved that the band was the real deal. I believe it will be Black Dog Barking that will bring Airbourne their greatest success yet. Why is that you ask?
Black Dog Barking has not one, but ten songs that could easily be radio singles for Airbourne. Airbourne has managed to load this album with a bunch of killer fist-pumping anthems that are going to please most hard rock fans out there. Joel O’Keeffe sings, screams and plays his ass off on this album, and I hear some definite growth in his playing as well.
“Ready To Rock”, “Animalize”, and “Live It Up” are my favorites on this record but there isn’t one dud in the bunch.
I spent the extra money for the UK import which has three bonus tracks (Why doesn’t the U.S. get these ROADRUNNER?!), and I am glad I did. The bonus songs are pretty solid numbers too.
Some may argue that there isn’t one original thing about Black Dog Barking. I say what the album lacks in originality, it makes up for it with pure hard rock awesomeness. Airbourne is dishing out the best Aussie rock out there right now, and that includes most of the bands that inspired them. Don’t miss this! You won’t be disappointed! Look out for Airbourne on the Rock Allegiance Tour coming to major venues later this summer!
Rating: Out of 10
01. Ready To Rock
03. No One Fits Me (Better Than You)
04. Back In The Game
06. Live It Up
07. Woman Like That
09. Cradle To the Grave
10. Black Dog Barking
11. Jack Attack
12. You Got The Skills (To Pay The Bills)
13. Party In The Penthouse
Joel O’Keeffe – lead vocals, lead guitar
David Roads – rhythm guitar, backing vocals
Justin Street – bass, backing vocals
Ryan O’Keeffe – drums
Part glam, part thrash, part progressive, The Savage Playground, Crashdiet’s latest record, is all grand. Highlighting masterpiece guitar solos, sleazy vocals, and good time party lyrics, The Savage Playground is a record that emphasizes fun. And who doesn’t like to have fun?
Opening with a spoken soliloquy reminiscent of Motley Crue’s “…In The Beginning,” The Savage Playground takes hold immediately with glam vocals, sleaze guitars, and a whole lot of hard rocking for the record. After pelting the listener with glam rock for the opener “Change The World,” Crashdiet shifts gear to trash with “Cocaine Cowboys.” This is a turn it up loud and play it real proud party song with a thumping bass beat that goes on for miles.
The guitar work from Martin sweet on this album is exceptional. His solos absolutely shred and add a sophisticated level of depth to the record. Sweet has a great appreciation for scales and solos and applies them at just the right time. His genius stands out on The Savage Playground. The combination of Sweet’s guitar and Simon Cruz’ vocals blend well and bring The Savage Playground to life.
Crashdiet spent a lot of time mixing up their sound for this release. Venturing between glam, sleaze, thrash, progressive, and even a ballad, Crashdiet was not afraid to experiment with different sounds and styles which helped the record stay fresh. It can be disappointing when every song on an album starts to sound the same as the last, but The Savage Playground has none of that. Each track is a new piece that stands out on its own and helps to further cement the versatility of Crashdiet.
If you are looking for a record that rocks hard and is worthy of a few spins this spring while cruising down the highway, or playing air guitar in your basement, give The Savage Playground a try. It’s an album that will get several listens over the course of time. Highly entertaining, heavily rocking, and quite delightful, The Savage Playground is a solid effort from Crashdiet.
Rating: Out of 10
- Change The World
- Cocaine Cowboys
- Lickin’ Dog
- Sin City
- Tonight’s The Night
- Damaged Kid
Simon Cruz – Lead Vocals, Rhythm Guitar
Martin Sweet – Lead Guitar
Peter London – Bass Guitar
Eric Young – Drums
Reviewed by Ryo Vie
I will admit that I have never listened to Atreyu more than once or twice. They were never a band that hit me right away, so I never spent much time with them. I wasn’t even aware that the band was on hiatus while members worked on side projects and pursued other interests. So when Hell Or Highwater’s Begin Again came across my desk for review, I did not realize that it was Atreyu drummer/vocalist Brandon Saller’s side project. That being said, I am glad that I took the time to review Begin Again.
Begin Again is a solid modern rock record. Packed with hard edged, heavy songs that are completed with melody and harmony, Begin Again is an album that most rock fans will want to hear. And once the album is heard you can’t get it out of your head. Begin Again has staying power and replay value. The album kicks off with the first single, Gimme Love. This is a hard rocking track that is meant to get attention and succeeds. Saller’s vocals are reminiscent of Hinder’s Austin Winkler and the twin guitar attack by Matt Pauling and Neal Tiemann is first rate.
The heavy hits continue with “Hail Mary” and “Terrorized In The Night.” The band plays hard on these heavy tracks and the musical talent of each band member shines through. The songs are high energy and touch on typical hard rock themes of anger, disappointment, rage and fear. The songs are performed with a modern rock flair, heavy drums, exceptional guitars, and solid vocals. The combined elements equal nothing but pure entertainment.
The band doesn’t stop there. Begin Again delivers in the slower/ballad department as well. And although “Tragedy” and “Rock Water’s Edge” aren’t true ballads in the old 80s power ballad sense, they are still slower, bluesy songs that deliver in power and passion. Saller’s lyrics are deep and meaningful and when combined with amazing guitar riffs, it is easy to see how either, or both, of these songs will be a huge radio hit. “When The Morning Comes” is the most radio friendly, mainstream song on the record and it is a song that people will be rocking along with all summer long. Led by a blistering guitar intro followed by an enjoyable chord progression and sing-along lyrics, “When The Morning Comes” is one of the best tracks on this record.
Begin Again is an exceptional album that will rock you on first listen. After that, you will find yourself hitting repeat several times. It is an album that can be played over and over again without getting stale. Saller’s voice is strong, steady, and enjoyable. Pauling and Tiemann are a fantastic guitar duo that play off each other well, each knowing exactly when to hold back so the other can move forward. Their timing is second to none and it is their combined ability that really makes Begin Again come to life and sing.
If you are searching for a new band or a new record that is going to excite you and make you want to hear more, pick up a copy of Begin Again. If you are looking for the next great modern rock sound filled with superb hooks and melodious riffs that tunnel into your eardrums and don’t leave until they are committed to your memory, Begin Again is the record for you. Pick it up.
Rating: Out of 10
- Gimme Love
- Hail Mary!
- Terrorized In The Night
- Find The Time To Breathe
- Rock Waters Edge
- Go Alone (Featuring M Shadows)
- When The Morning Comes
- Crash & Burn
- Come Alive
- We All Wanna Go Home
- Tragedy (Villain Remix) – Bonus Track
- The Boxer – Bonus Track
- Pretty Penny – Bonus Track
Hell Or Highwater Is:
Brandon Saller – Vocals
Matt Pauling – Guitar
Neal Tiemann – Guitar
Joey Bradford – Bass
Captain Carl – Drums
Reviewed by Ryo Vie
It has taken me a while to stumble upon the band Hellbastard, but man oh man am I glad I did. The band’s new EP “Sons of Bitches” might be short, but it doesn’t lack in heavy riffs or killer grooves. Hellbastard’s sound sounds like a marriage of Slayer, and Suicidal Tendencies. This is simply killer metal that fans of classic thrash are going to love. I may have over looked Hellbastard because of their name, but I won’t make that mistake again. I can’t wait to hear their full length album due out later in 2013, or their back catalog of music which is pretty deep as well.
Aside from the intro “Wolfsong” which is nothing more than an intro, and the EP closer “Throw The Petrol Bomb”, which is a wacky reggae number, this EP is pretty strong.
If you want a taste of some killer classic thrash, you gotta check out Hellbastard’s Sons of Bitches! Hellbastard will be a band to watch in 2013!
Rating:Out of 10
3. Sons of Bitches
4. System Whore
5. We Had Evidence
6. Throw The Petrol Bomb
Malcolm “Scruff” Lewty – Vocals & Guitars
Tom McCombe – Guitars
Paul O’Shea – Bass Guitars
Nathan Ellis – Drums
Last week, Buckcherry released their sixth album, Confessions. Confessions was originally slated for a 2012 release, and I am glad the band didn’t rush this one out. Good things come to those who wait. You see, not only does Confessions contain some of Buckcherry’s strongest song writing to date, the band’s playing is also a step above their previous releases.
With Confessions, Buckcherry tackles the seven deadly sins. Gluttony, wrath, envy, sloth, greed, pride and lust are all represented on Buckcherry’s latest opus, and are also seven of the album’s song titles. The lyrics are based on singer Josh Todd’s childhood, and his transformation into adulthood. The lyrics are a step above the normal song writing from Buckcherry. Those looking for “Crazy Bitch” part two, won’t find it on Confessions. What you will find however are some well crafted songs that absolutely rock.
This is the first Buckcherry album that I could listen to all the way through since 15 was released. The only negative I could find with this album, is that it lacks the sing along choruses that have made so many of Buckcherry’s songs popular. It may be a different style of writing for Buckcherry, but I couldn’t find one bad song on Confessions.
With that being said, I still think this is Buckcherry’s strongest album since 15, and one that is going to get a ton of replay in 2013 and beyond. If you haven’t picked up Confessions yet, I highly recommend checking it out! The extended edition of this CD ( available at Best Buy) includes two great bonus songs, “Give ‘Em What They Want” and “When the Fire Starts” and a cool DVD as well. Don’t miss this!
Rating: Out of 10
3. Nothing Left But Tears
4. The Truth
7. Seven Ways To Die
13. Dreamin’ of You
14. Give ‘Em What They Want
15. When The Fire Starts
Josh Todd – Lead Vocals
Keith Nelson – Lead & rhythm guitar
Stevie D. – Rhythm & lead guitar
Jimmy Ashhurst – bass guitar
Xavier Muriel – drums, percussion
I try my best not to be biased when reviewing albums. I prefer to have no expectations, listen with an open ear, and let the music tell me what to write. However, when it came time to review Hinder’s latest album, Welcome To The Freakshow, I must admit that I entered with expectations. Hinder’s last three albums were absolutely incredible, and this band has become one of my “go-to” groups when I don’t know what to listen to. The anticipation of a new Hinder record had me excited and hopeful. These hard rocking greats were going to once again douse my soul with some solid music. Once I listened to the album, I was reminded why I should never have expectations.
Welcome To The Freakshow starts out in typical Hinder fashion with the first track, “Save Me.” And up until the 2-minute mark, “Save Me” sounds like classic Hinder. Then, out of nowhere, violins enter the mix and lead singer Austin Winkler goes into a small rap. That’s right, I said rap, as in hip-hop music. Where did that come from? And while it doesn’t destroy the song, it sets the stage for fans to scratch their heads. The following track, “Ladies Come First” doesn’t do much to persuade me that this record will be a strong effort. Weak vocals, weaker lyrics, and a chorus that sounds like it was ripped right out of a Nickelback song destroy any credibility this track may have had.
The next batch of songs lift Welcome To The Freak Show and gave me hope that this would be a solid album after all. “Should Have Known Better,” is a return to the classic Hinder sound that fans have come to know and love. Although it is a ballad, ballads are where Hinder tend to excel and “Should Have Known Better” is no exception. Possibly the strongest track on the record, “Should Have Known Better” has hit written all over it. The great tunes continued with title track “Welcome To The Freakshow,” and “Talk To Me.” “Welcome To The Freakshow” is classic, hard rocking Hinder with witty lyrics and sexual themes, while “Talk To Me” is another grand ballad performed in the iconic Hinder style. “Get Me Away From You” is another strong ballad, and the following track “Is It Just Me” is a mid-tempo sing along song focusing on themes of doubt and self adjustment.
The real challenge with “Welcome To The Freakshow” is that it is quite ballad heavy. This formula has worked for other bands in the past (Nickelback comes to mind), but I’ve always considered Hinder more of a hard edged band. That’s not to say the ballads are bad, because they aren’t. All of the ballads are actually well written and enjoyable to listen to multiple times through. However, I like the harder edged Hinder and that is what is absent from “Welcome To The Freakshow.” Even the non-ballads are more mid-tempo than flat out rocker, and that takes away from the Hinder that we have come to enjoy. Yes, they kick it up with “Welcome To The Freakshow” and “See You In Hell,” but it isn’t enough to really make Welcome To The Freakshow stand out on its own. Perhaps the band wanted to reach a different audience, or grow the one they have, or branch out in a different direction. I can understand that and don’t fault them for trying something new. However, it makes for a disappointment when coming in with set expectations.
I appreciate that Hinder wanted to be more experimental for their fourth album. And since they have brought me so much joy over the last few years, I am willing to give Hinder a pass this go round. Almost every band, at some point in their career, releases at least one below average record. With that in mind, Hinder is forgiven for Welcome To The Freakshow. While not terrible, it is far from fantastic, and that is what I have come to expect from Hinder—nothing but the best. This time around, the band did not bring their best, but I have every reason to believe that they will make it up to me when they record their next one.
Rating: Out of 10
- Save Me
- Ladies Come First
- Should Have Known Better
- Talk To Me
- Get Me Away From You
- Is It Just Me
- I Don’t Wanna Believe
- See You In Hell
- Anyone But You
- Wanna Be Rich
Austin Winkler – Vocals
Joe Garvey – Lead Guitar
Mark King – Rhythm Guitar
Mike Rodden – Bass Guitar
Cody Hanson – Drums
Mega celebrated hard rock act AC/DC have released a live album as a compliment to their recent world tour. Live At River Plate is the band’s first live album in 20 years and it could not have come at a better time. With the band not planning on touring or releasing any new music for at least another year or two, fans needed something to help them through the waiting period. Live At River Plate was the answer.
Recorded on December 4, 2009, at River Plate Stadium in Buenoa Aires, Argentina, Live At River Plate brings the joy of an AC/DC concert right to your stereo. Capturing all of the magic of a live AC/DC concert, this double disc set delivers the concert goods in every way that your ear drums can imagine and enjoy. Long time fans will rejoice in the song selection as there are several Bon Scott era songs to be found on this live set. New comers will be delighted to see there are four tracks from the bands last studio album, Black Ice. Simply put there is something for everybody on this collection.
And while the song selection is deep and covers a large amount of the AC/DC catalog, it was disappointing to not have any selections from Stiff Upper Lip represented. I understand that the band recorded a concert and released it as their live album, but I had a similar complaint during the tour as well. Stiff Upper Lip is a fantastic album that was recorded long after the band’s last live album was released. To not have any live cuts from Stiff Upper Lip is a real shame and the absence is noted. I was just as disappointed that “Hard As A Rock” from Ballbreaker was not included. Since it was the band’s first live album in 20 years, I would like to have heard more live versions of the songs that came out in the last 20 years. This, however, is a minor complaint at best.
The songs that are included are done masterfully. While Brian Johnson may not sound like he did 20 years ago, his voice is still great. His vocals soar on classics like “You Shook Me All Night Long,” and “Thunderstruck.” He can also hold his own when singing the Bon Scott beauties like “Hell Ain’t A Bad Place To Be,” and “Let There Be Rock.” And while he may be much older, Brian Johnson still rocks with the best of them. Age hasn’t slowed him down and it is apparent on Live At River Plate.
If you have never witnessed AC/DC live in concert, then this set is a wonderful way to hear the magic. As they always do, AC/DC lets the music do most of the talking, with very little stage rap from Brian Johnson. That’s not to say that he doesn’t work the crowd, he has his own way of doing that, but banter isn’t his way. Instead it’s the musical performances that dominate the record. And a great Angus solo during “Let There Be Rock” is the highlight of the record. Angus Young is still one of the greatest guitar players alive, and his exciting and energized solo on this song just shows how amazing he truly is.
If you missed the Black Ice tour, or if you are just looking for some AC/DC music to hold you over until the next record or tour, pick up a copy of Live At River Plate. It is the perfect album for fans both new and old. Live At River Plate is guaranteed to have your head banging and finding you playing air guitar in no time at all.
Rating: Out of 10
Rock N Roll Train
Hell Ain’t A Bad Place To Be
Back In Black
Dirt Deeds Done Dirt Cheap
Shot Down In Flames
Shoot To Thrill
Dog Eat Dog
You Shook Me All Night Long
Whole Lotta Rosie
Let There Be Rock
Highway To Hell
For Those About To Rock (We Salute You)
Angus Young – Lead Guitar
Malcom Young – Rhythm Guitar
Brian Johnson – Vocals
Cliff Williams – Bass Guitar
Phil Rudd – Drums
Reviewed by Ryo Vie
One of the best Swedish Metal band has returned with another fabulous album and I couldn’t be more excited. If you haven’t checked out Bullet yet, this is definitely the time to get to know the band. Full Pull is the fourth album from the Swedish hard rockers and it could be their best album yet.
Hitting with the power of a freight train at full speed, Bullet once again delivers the hard rocking antics on Full Pull. The signature stomp and wail musical style is present and accounted for. The hard rocking, metal madness is all there. And Hell Hofer’s scratchy, screaming vocals are still intact. Hell Hofer has such a unique voice that it is hard for any description to do it justice. Some would categorize it as a voice that you either love or hate, but I don’t think that is 100 percent accurate. Either way, I love Hell’s voice and I feel that it is the perfect accompaniment to Bullet’s fast paced hard rock.
The three-pack of potential hits, “Midnight Oil,” “Full Pull,” and “Running Away,” get Full Pull started with a bang. The songs feature heavy guitar work led by Hampus Klang and complimented beautifully by Erik Almstrom. The guitar playing on Full Pull makes me want to be a teenager again, so that I can perform air guitar in front of my mirror for hours on end. Almstrom and Klang may not get the recognition of a Malmsteen, or a Bettencourt, but they are just as talented, and Full Pull helps prove that. Hofer’s vocals are in fine form and by the time “Running Away” shows up on the player, long time fans will be hooked once again. Hofer’s distinctive style continues to mesmerize.
Full Pull does find Bullet slightly altering their style and direction. While their previous albums have been a lot of “more of the same” (in a very good way), Full Pull finds the band slowing the tempo down at times. I wasn’t sure if that was so old fans could keep up, or an attempt to lure new fans into the fold. Full Pull finds Bullet leaning away from the thrash slightly and creeping toward the mainstream. And while there isn’t a ballad present on Full Pull, I worry that the band may be closer than ever to writing one. That would be a shame, because Bullet is truly about raw power and hard hitting rock and roll. Leave the ballads to the hair metal bands. Please.
Overall, Bullet have delivered another fantastic gem of a record that will have feet stomping, hands clapping, and fans cheering in no time. Bullet has never disappointed with a record release and they continue to follow that trend with Full Pull. If you haven’t taken the time to seek out Bullet, Full Pull is a great album to get you invested in the band. Any true metal music lover will find nothing but redeeming qualities when listening to Full Pull.
Rating: Out of 10
- Midnight Oil
- Full Pull
- Running Away
- All Fired Up
- Rolling Home
- In The Heat
- High On The Hog
- Rush Hour
- Free Riding
Hell Hofer –Vocals
Hampus Klang – Lead Guitar
Erik Almstrom – Guitars
Adam Hector – Bass
Gustav Hjortsjo – Drums
I have been listening to Aerosmith’s Music From Another Dimension for a couple of weeks now. I was hoping that my initial opinion of this release would change with a few repeat listens. My opinion hasn’t changed at all. Music From Another Dimension is just average.
Quite frankly, I didn’t have high hopes for Aerosmith’s latest effort. With there being so much infighting in the band, and Steven Tyler’s stint on American Idol, I was doubtful that the band, in its current state of health
could deliver an album worthy of the Aerosmith name.
After listening to the CD several times, my thoughts are this: Music From Another Dimension suffers from too many ballads, too many tracks, and an overall cohesive feel. Sure there are some good songs, but nothing that will probably overwhelm you, and say OOOOOH, I have to run out and buy the new Aerosmith album. If you are an Aerosmith fan, chances are you probably have this in your collection already anyway.
On a positive note, the band has brought in Jack Douglas to produce the album, and the overall production is very good.
The album starts off strong enough, but about midway through it starts to taper off, and suffers from far too many ballads.
The opening track “Luv XXX” sounds like a classic Aerosmith track, and that is great, but the lyrics are just stupid. The song does grow on you though.
“Oh Yeah” sounds like it could have been on Get A Grip. This is a pretty catchy, yet simple tune.
“Beautiful” could possibly be a hit for Aerosmith, but time will tell on this one. The jangly guitars give this song a feel more akin to Aerosmith’s later material, but I am a fan of all eras of Aerosmith so that isn’t a problem for me.
“Out Go The Lights” might just have one of the best Aerosmith riffs in recent years, the problem with this song is the background singers. I think the background singers weaken the track with their vocal piece on the lyrics “If You Want to Take A Lookie, Cookie Tonight Might Be Your Lucky, Nighty Nite Nite”. I think it could have been a stronger song without this. The song seems to go on forever too. It is about two minutes longer than it needs to be. This song could have been one of Aerosmith’s biggest hits, but it is overall a let down.
“Legendary Child” was the first single from the album, and this song is actually pretty good. I think this song could have easily been on Pump, but the song is a leftover demo from “Get A Grip”. I am glad they decided to use this song. I like this one pretty well.
“What Could Have Been Love” is the first sappy Aerosmith ballad, and this song will likely be a COUNTRY hit for Aerosmith. One word defines my opinion of this song, “BLECH”!!!. I skip this song every time. (You can check it out in the video below).
Every time I listen to “Street Jesus” I start thinking “Sweet Emotion”. I guess it is the vocal part on the chorus that is similar between the “Street” and “Sweet”.
I like this song a lot, even if it does somewhat borrow from one of Aerosmith’s biggest hits.
“Can’t Stop Lovin’ You” features a duet with Country superstar Carrie Underwood. I have to question Aerosmith’s sanity on this one. Are they looking to recreate some magic, the way they did with RUN DMC in the 80’s? If you wanted to gain a bunch of new country fans, bringing in Carrie Underwood is probably a great idea, but not so much for the rock crowd. I don’t have any problems with Carrie Underwood. She is a hell of a singer. It just seems odd to have a country singer on an Aerosmith album. Oddly enough, this song has less of a country feel than “What Could Have Been Love”. I think this song would have been better suited on a Steven Tyler solo album, than an Aerosmith album, but that is just me.
After a few non-Aerosmtih sounding tracks, we finally get another rocker with “Lover Alot”. This one is pretty catchy, and ought to translate well live.
Joe Perry handles the vocals on “Freedom Fighter”, and as much as I love Joe’s guitar work, I don’t care for his voice very much. The lyrics on this song are pretty good. It is a shame that Steven didn’t sing on this one. It could have been much better. The same goes for the song “Something”. I love the bluesy music on this song, but Joe’s voice just doesn’t do it for me.
The album closes with another sappy ballad “The Last Goodbye”. I think the album, could have been better served by ending with another rocker. It doesn’t and it ends on a weak note in my opinion.
The special edition from Music From Another Dimension includes three bonus tracks, “Up On The Mountain” (sung by Tom Hamilton), “Oasis In The Night” (Sung by Joe Perry) and “Sunny Side of Love” (Sung By Steven Tyler). “Sunny Side of Love” is the best song out of the three. It is a little more pop than rock, but it is still better than a few of the songs that made it on the main track listing of Music From Another Dimension.
Am I being too critical of Aerosmith? Perhaps! I just don’t believe the music from Music From Another Dimension is as good as past Aerosmith releases, and that is disappointing. This is the type of CD that I probably won’t reach for in my collection very often, but won’t turn it off if I hear it on the radio either.
Rating: Out of 10
01. LUV XXX
02. Oh Yeah
04. Tell Me
05. Out Go The Lights
06. Legendary Child
07. What Could Have Been Love
08. Street Jesus
09. Can’t Stop Lovin’ You (Duet With Carrie Underwood)
10. Lover Alot
11. We All Fall Down
12. Freedom Fighter
15. Another Last Goodbye
01. Up On the Mountain
02. Oasis In The Night
03. Sunny Side of Love
Steven Tyler – Vocals, Guitars, Keys, Percussion, Harmonica
Joe Perry – Guitars and Vocals
Tom Hamilton – Bass and Vocals
Brad Whitford – Guitars and Backing Vocals
Joey Kramer – Drums, Percussion and Backing Vocals
When former Guns N’ Roses drummer Steven Adler comes back from the dead, he means it. When Adler’s new CD hits the stores on 11/27, prepare to be BLOWN AWAY! Back From The Dead is packed with great songs, and some killer guest appearances from John 5, Slash and Jeff Pilson. I have been looking forward to Adler’s solo debut for quite some time, but I didn’t expect it to be THIS good.
I had high hopes for this album after hearing “The One That You Hated” a few months ago. Back From The Dead does not disappoint one bit!
Jeff Pilson produced the album with Adler, and also handles all of the bass work on the CD. When you have a rhythm section that is Steven Adler and Jeff Pilson, can you really do wrong?
Steven Adler scored big when he got Lynam’s Jacob Bunton to join his band. No only does Bunton handle the vocals for Adler, but is also the lead song writer. Bunton has written a bunch of quality songs, and delivers what could be the vocal performance of his career.
The opening song “Back From The Dead” almost has a Cinderella like opening, but once this song kicks into gear, it is a take no prisoners, head-banging tune.
“Own Worst Enemy”, “Another Version of The Truth” and “The One That You Hated” are three more killer tracks stacked up back to back.
I was excited to learn that John 5 is one of the guest guitarists on Back From The Dead. If you are familiar with John 5, then you will recognize his playing on “Good To Be Bad”. His guitar work is amazing on this song!
I figured that “Just Don’t Ask featuring Slash would be a real ripping track, and I was very wrong about that one. This is a slower track, but Slash’s fretwork shines. This is a great song!
“Blown Away” is a real rocker that ought to be a radio single for Adler. This song is going to take the world by storm.
“Your Diamonds” has a 70’s classic rock feel, while the album closer “Dead Wrong” has a more of a modern feel to it.
Back From The Dead is easily one of the biggest surprises, and strongest albums of 2012. I love this album, and I think you will too! Don’t miss this!
Rating: Out of 10
Back From the Dead will be released on November 27th, 2012. You can preorder the CD here!
1. Back From The Dead (Paul, Pilson, Bunton)
2. Own Worst Enemy (Paul, Bunton)
3. Another Version Of The Truth (Bunton, Paul, Pilson)
4. The One That You Hated (Bunton, Paul)
5. Good To Be Bad (Paul, Bunton)
6. Just Don’t Ask (Bunton)
7. Blown Away (Bunton)
8. Waterfall (Paul, Bunton)
9. Habit (Paul)
10. Your Diamonds (Bunton)
11.Dead Wrong (Paul, Bunton)
Jacob Bunton -lead vocals, guitar, mandolin and piano
Lonny Paul – guitar and vocals
Steven Adler- drums, cowbell, shakers, tambourine, crowbar, shovel and screams
Johnny Martin – bass and vocals
Jeff Pilson – bass on all tracks, 6 string guitar, keys and vocals
Slash – Lead guitar on “Just Don’t Ask”
John 5 – Lead guitar on “Good To Be Bad”
Michael Lord – Piano on “Waterfall”
I have been listening to Dokken for over 30 years now, and I have to admit that I have some extremely strong opinions about the band. I chose not to review Broken Bones when it first came out, as I didn’t want to deter or sway those fans that would purchase Broken Bones. I didn’t like the band’s last album Lightning Strikes Again very much, and I didn’t expect Broken Bones to be much better. The video for “Empire” was released, and I have to admit that I had a glimpse of hope for the new album. Jon Levin’s guitar is shredding, “Wild” Mick Brown is sounding great on the skins, and Don Dokken surprisingly pushes his voice in this song. With that being said, I decided to spin Broken Bones, and give the band another chance.
Broken Bones starts off strong enough. The first three songs, “Empire”, “Broken Bones” and “Best of Me” have that classic Dokken feel. It certainly isn’t Back For The Attack era stuff, but it is solid enough to keep me interested.
At this point the album shifts into a bunch of mid tempo songs that honestly work a lot better with Don Dokken’s voice. Don’s voice hasn’t aged well, but the songs were smartly crafted to take advantage of his diminished range. Some of the songs have a more modern approach, but Jon Levin keeps it very Dokken like with his Lynch style noodling.
One song that I typically won’t expect to like at all, “Victim of the Crime” has grown on me the most. The song has a little middle eastern flair, mixed with a little Sabbath like heaviness. Levin throws in a little Dokken style flash to keep the song honest. I think this might be the most creative song on Broken Bones.
The album closes out in good fashion with a flashy rocker “Tonight” that is more in the classic Dokken style. I thought this song helped to bring the whole album together. It is a very smartly mixed album in my opinion. Heavy rockers up front, mid tempo stuff in the middle, and a classic Dokken style rocker to close it out.
Overall, I didn’t expect to like Broken Bones at all, and after giving it a few spins, I have really enjoyed this album. I think it is Dokken’s strongest album since 1999’s Erase The Slate. If you go in expecting Under Lock and Key, or Back For The Attack you may be disappointed. If you listen with an open mind, you might be greatly surprised.
Give Broken Bones a chance! I they can win over this Dokken critic, they can certainly win you over too!
Rating: Out of 10
02. Broken Bones
03. Best of Me
06. Victim Of The Crime
07. Burning Tears
09. For The Last Time
10. Fade Away
Don Dokken – vocals
Mick Brown – drums
Jon Levin – guitar
Sean McNabb – bass
Over the last couple of years, I have heard a lot about Danko Jones and it was all positive. From their live shows to their recorded music, everyone was speaking highly of the band. Even with all of the rave reviews and terrific word of mouth, I never took the time to check them out. So, when their latest disc, Rock And Roll Is Black And Blue, was released, I figured that now was as good a time as any and I decided to give the band a listen. Am I ever glad that I finally took the time to pay attention to Danko Jones.
Rock And Roll Is Black And Blue is the band’s sixth studio album, and having not heard the other five, I wasn’t sure what to expect. What I got was a blues/rock record full of sexual vibes, hard rocking music, and a 10 on the fun factor! Anyone who is a fan of songs about hot women, rock music, and having a great time on a daily basis, is going to love Rock And Roll Is Black And Blue. While the subject matter is light and playful, the music is fast and furious, creating an overall vibe that is nothing short of terrific.
Songs like “Legs,” “You Wear Me Down,” and “Type Of Girl,” are exactly what they seem, but not in a clichéd sort of way. Danko Jones found a way to take standard themes of hard rock music and breathe a whole new life into them, crafting fun songs that everyone will want to sing along to. “Legs” in particular is a great sing along with a shouting chorus of “Legs! Legs! Legs! Long legs!” And while that may seem simple in print, it’s nothing but pure fun with the volume cranked up.
Ripe with rhythmic riffs, several chord changes, and a lot of musical prowess, Rock And Roll Is Black And Blue is a solid album. The passion that Danko Jones has for his music is evident in the songs provided on this disc. Rock And Roll Is Black And Blue is one of those highly entertaining albums that you fall in love with right away. By the second time through the record you will find yourself singing along, hitting the repeat button (particularly for “Legs” and “Just A Beautiful Day”), and just wanting to hear the album over and over again.
Rock And Roll Is Black And Blue is a great reminder that music doesn’t always have to be deep and meaningful—sometimes music can just be fun. Danko Jones reminds us all of what we loved in early sleaze metal: women, music, and women. It’s a refreshing change of pace from the dark melodrama that dominates the rock scene today. If you are yearning to discover fun music that will find your lips moving and your backside shaking, as you dance around your living room in your underpants, Rock And Roll Is Black And Blue is the record for you. Danko Jones, I only wish that I had paid attention to you sooner than this!
Rating: Out of 10
02. Get Up
04. Just A Beautiful Day
05. I Don’t Care
06. You Wear Me Down
07. Type Of Girl
08. Always Away
10. Don’t Do This
11. The Masochist
12. I Believed In God
13. I Believed In God (Reprise)
Danko Jones Is:
Danko Jones – Vocals, Guitars
John Calabrese – Bass Guitar
Atom Willard – Drums
Reviewed by Ryo Vie
On April 18th, Europe released their 9th CD, Bag of Bones. If your only knowledge of Europe is the band’s mega pop metal “The Final Countdown”, you may find yourself disappointed with the band’s latest opus. This is not a pop metal CD. This is a real rock record! For you classic rock fans, Europe has offered up a tasty block of well executed rock that will sound amazing on your turntables, or “gasp” mp3 players.
Europe’s latest long player has a classic, more bluesy feel to the music. There are moments when I hear little bits of Deep Purple and Led Zeppelin influence in the music, and I think that is really cool. I love the classic approach that the band took for this album. John Norum dishes out some excellent riffs, but also offers up a variety of styles which shows just how versatile of guitarist he is. Joey Tempest’s voice is as strong as ever, but I think he smartly refrains from going after those super high notes. That makes no difference on the songs on Bag of Bones, as Tempest often proves he has plenty of gas in the tank. He delivers another great vocal performance.
Bag of Bones is more of a guitar oriented album, but the music also has some excellent keyboards in it too. Mic Michaeli’s playing reminds me a lot of Jon Lord on this album. His keys and bluesy approach really enhance the songs on Bag of Bones.
There are plenty of rockin’ cuts on this disc including “Riches to Rags”, “Not Supposed To Sing the Blues”, “Firebox” and my personal favorite “Doghouse”. There really isn’t a bad song in the bunch. This is the type of album that you can listen to beginning to end, and will want to hit repeat afterwards. Bag of Bones may be a bit of a grower for some, but if you give this one a fair chance, I think you will enjoy it quite a bit.
While Bag of Bones has not had an official release in United States, you can still purchase it at a reasonable price from Amazon.com at this link.
Rating: Out of 10
01. Riches to Rags
02. Not Supposed to Sing the Blues
04. Bag of Bones
06. My Woman My Friend
07. Demon Head
08. Drink and a Smile
10. Mercy You Mercy Me
11. Bring It All Home
Joey Tempest – lead and backing vocals
John Norum – guitars
John Levén – Bass
Mic Michaeli – keyboards and backing vocals
Ian Haugland – drums and backing vocals
Modern rock fans have a new reason to rejoice and that reason is The Wreckage, the debut album from Candlelight Red. This Pennsylvania quartet has been making their presence known on the hard rock scene, playing several festivals, and opening a number of hot tours in 2012. The Wreckage shows just why Candlelight Red is receiving much attention in the modern rock world. Put simply, Candlelight Red is a hard rock band that makes great music.
Filled with heavy and hard tunes, The Wreckage is a fun-filled album of rock music that satisfies. Any of us that love Three Days Grace, New Medicine, or other similar modern rock darlings are going to enjoy listening to The Wreckage. Candlelight Red have released an album of eight original goodies and one interesting cover song that is getting some airplay as of late.
The band’s original songs are real treasures to the ear. They are not overproduced, and they are not weak, which is usually a winning combination to making great music. And while The Wreckage does not contain any Earth shattering, ground breaking, innovative Pink Floyd-esque tracks, that hardly matters. What The Wreckage does contain is 8 original songs that are immensely enjoyable. And in the end, isn’t that what matters most?
The last track on the record is a cover of “The Look,” a big pop hit for the band Roxette in the late 80s. As a huge fan of the original song, I was curious to see what Candlelight Red would do with this cover. And while I commend them for choosing a more pop-oriented song to cover, I have to admit that I much prefer the band’s original material. I miss the falsetto of Marie Fredriksson, which I always felt made the song such a hit.
That’s not to say that “She’s Got The Look” is unbearable, because it is actually enjoyable from a nostalgic sense. However, it is not something that would have me buying The Wreckage. However, original songs like “The Dirt,” and “Medicated,” would. Perhaps it’s a chance for fans to sing along with the band at concerts while they get their name out there, but I would have much preferred one more original song on The Wreckage.
Cover song aside, Candlelight Red have released a solid album complete with creative, entertaining songs. If you’re looking for some hard rocking new music that will get multiple spins on your IPod, definitely check out Candlelight Red’s The Wreckage.
Rating: Out of 10
- The Dirt
- Gone Forever
- The Wreckage
- Bend And Break
- In Your Hands
- She’s Got The Look
Candlelight Red Is:
Jeremy Edge – Guitars
Ryan Hoke – Vocals
Jamie Morral – Bass
Brian Dugan – Drums
Reviewed by Ryo Vie
Any time a new band catapults onto the scene with loads of hype and praise, I am skeptical. Are the critics all desperately searching for the next darlings of rock? Is the music really as good as everyone claims, or is everyone just drinking the Kool-Aid? Needless to say, when the self-titled debut album from Dead Sara came across my desk, my skepticism was at an all time high. I had heard a lot of great things about this band from critics. It made me wonder if Dead Sara could live up to the hype. I am happy to report that not only can they handle the hype, Dead Sara is even better than any of the praise they have received.
The last time I heard a debut record this fantastic, it was by a little known band named Guns N Roses. We know their story and the fame that they went on to, the question is will Dead Sara do the same? What is most amazing about the debut album from Dead Sara is how every single song is a monster track. There is absolutely zero filler on this record. From “Whispers & Ashes” to “Sorry For It All” every song on this album is intense, rocking, and needs to be listened to multiple times.
If you can imagine the offspring of Evanescence and Flyleaf on steroids, then you have a good idea of what Dead Sara sounds like. The throaty, sultry vocals of Emily Armstrong are what help set Dead Sara apart. A hard rock band that performs incredible music, merged with a blues style powerful female lead singer is hard to come by, but Dead Sara fit that description. From the opening notes of lead track “Whispers & Ashes” it is apparent that something special is being heard. Dead Sara continues to serve mesmerizing songs with “We Are What You Say,” an ode to youth, and the hard hitting first single, “Weatherman.”
Guitarist Siouxsie Medley sets the pace on the harder tracks from Dead Sara. Her guitar playing is a blistering mix of Kurt Cobain, Keith Richards, and Slash, which is fitting when noting that Dead Sara’s influences range from the blues and classic rock to modern punk. Medley is as talented with the ax as Armstrong is with her vocals. Together these two are the most exciting front duo since Tyler/Perry. For anyone that yearns for their music to deliver more, there is now a solution—Dead Sara.
The ballads of the album “Dear Love,” “Face To Face,” and album closer “Sorry For It All,” draw heavy on the blues influence while staying grounded in modern rock. Dead Sara takes the classic power ballad and adds their own twists and turns, creating masterpieces. While the heavier tracks will find many fans banging their heads or jumping around like madmen, the ballads will no doubt find lighters a-plenty, and contain thought provoking lyrics to let the fans linger on the poetic beauty of Armstrong’s highly talented writing.
There is not one negative thing that can be said about Dead Sara. Not one constructive criticism can be made. Dead Sara is about as perfect as an album can be, and the fact that it is a rookie effort, only helps to confirm the fact that Dead Sara is the real deal. If there is only one record that you purchase this year, it needs to be the self titled debut from Dead Sara. You will not hear a better album in 2012.
Rating: Out of 10
Whispers & Ashes
We Are What You Say
I Said You Were Lucky
Face To Face
Test On My Patience
Sorry For It All
Dead Sara Is:
Emily Armstrong – Vocals
Siouxsie Medley – Guitar
Chris Null – Bass
Sean Friday – Drums
Reviewed By Ryo Vie
Baltimore rockers, Charm City Devils have released their sophomore effort, Sins. As much as I loved the band’s debut album, Let’s Rock N Roll, Sins simply blows that album out of the water.
“Man of Constant Sorrow” is the best cover song I have listened to in a long, long time. Charm City Devils have taken this 100 year old folk song, and turned into something completely their own. I think they did an outstanding job with this cover. While “Man of Constant Sorrow” may be the only song that many of you have heard from Sins, the album is much deeper than that.
John Allen and company have crafted a bunch of catchy tunes, many of which ought to be hits for Charm City Devils.
“Walk Away” is massively infectious tune that all rock fans need to hear. I am hopeful that this will be released as a single. This is a great song!
“Still Alive” is the type of song that you will find yourself singing to after the first play.
The opening tunes “Spite” and “Unstoppable” have more of a modern hard rock feel style. “Spite” has a great message, and is another cool tune. This song rocks hard!
If you want some high octane rockers, Sins has those too. Give the songs “Love N War” and “Unstoppable” a listen. You won’t be disappointed. “Love N War” is the heaviest song on the album, and the driving rhythm is completely infectious. I thought “Unstoppable” had a Godsmack like vibe to it, and is extremely cool too!
Overall, Sins is a great album! It is rare when you get an album where you don’t want to skip a song or two. There isn’t a bad tune on Sins. You won’t want to skip any of them! The CD hasn’t left my play list since I purchased it. Don’t miss out on one of the best hard rock albums of 2012! I love Sins, and I think you will too!
You can purchase your copy of Sins from CDBaby at this link!
For more information on Charm City Devils, please visit the band’s links below:
Rating: Out of 10
03. Man of Constant Sorrow
04. Still Alive
05. Walk Away
06. Devil Is A Woman
07. Start It Up
08. Love N War
11. All You’ll Ever Need
Charm City Devils Are:
Rock fans, rejoice! Hurt has returned with the follow up to 2009’s amazing Goodbye To The Machine. This time around, Hurt brings the rock with The Crux. While Goodbye To The Machine found the band leaning more toward the mainstream sound of modern day radio rock, The Crux is a closer return to the earlier, dark, heavy riffs found on Volume I and Volume II.
With a new lead guitarist and a new drummer in the band, it’s obvious that the sound of The Crux is going to vary from that of Goodbye To The Machine. Guitarist Paul Spatola was an exceptional talent that will be missed. And while Spatola’s guitar is absent from the current record, it allows Hurt the opportunity to venture toward a different direction, or in this case, a return to the sound of their earlier albums. If you like the darker side of Hurt, you will love The Crux.
While the first two tracks on The Crux (“So When” and “Eden”) are solid songs, it is the third track “Links & Waves” that really catches the listener’s attention. The unfortunate part is that this song clocks in at a mere 1:15 in length. All that did was leave me wanting more. It left me curious to know what would have happened had the band decided to expand this song and breathe more life into it.
“Caught In The Rain” is easily my favorite song on the record. As I tend to lean more toward the newer style of Hurt, it only makes sense that I would love this song. Also, the guitar solo ripped out by Michael Roberts is spectacular and worthy of some love. “Caught in the Rain” is a hard rocker with a modern edge, finding Hurt really hitting their groove.
“Cuffed” continues the more modern sounding music that I’ve grown to love from this band. More sharp guitar work from Roberts, and some expert changes overall, make this a powerful and enjoyable piece of music. J. Loren Wince’s rock screams can be heard deep into the track and adds plenty of replay value to the song. “Cuffed” finds Wince’s voice at its finest, and combined with the great Roberts guitar work, this track stands out as one of the best on the record.
“How We End Up Alone” is Hurt’s first single from The Crux. It is easy to understand why the band released this song. Starting out soft and melodic, “How We End Up Alone” builds in intensity to a crescendo bridge and chorus that unveils its true power. A darker, grittier tone is captured which adds character. Roberts solo sings on this song, and if he hadn’t earned his Hurt stripes up until that point, he definitely had them at the end of this song. “How We End Up Alone” is a superb track and one of the best cuts that Hurt has ever released.
As a follow up record, The Crux holds up well. Fans that are looking for more of the Goodbye To The Machine sound may find themselves disappointed. However, long time fans that enjoy early Hurt are going to find The Crux getting several replays on their IPods. The balancing act is the sound that lay between the two discs. Songs like “Caught In The Rain” and “How We End Up Alone” are the perfect hybrid of old and new Hurt. As the band continues to progress and grow, it is my hope that they will focus more on these types of hybrid creations. It could be the best sound Hurt has come up with.
The Crux will be released Tuesday, May 1st. Get Your copy of the CD here!
Rating: Out of 10
- So When
- Links & Waves
- Sally Slips
- When It’s Cold
- Caught In the Rain
- How We End Up alone
- The Seer
J. Loren Wince – Vocals/Guitar
Michael Roberts – Guitar
Rek Mohr – Bass
Victor Ribas – Drums
I have to admit that I had no idea what to expect from the band, Adrenaline Mob. I figured the music would be good with Mike Portnoy (Dream Theater) and Russell Allen (Symphony X) involved. I have been a fan of Portnoy’s and Allen’s music for quite some time (I am still waiting for another Allen/Lande record). The real X Factor and surprise of Adrenaline Mob, is guitarist Mike Orlando. I knew nothing of Mr. Orlando prior to Adrenaline Mob. Needless to say, I am extremely impressed with his guitar work on this album. The music style ranges from modern hard rock to more classic styles (sorry, no prog rock here). There are some blood pumping hard rockers and a couple of slower numbers. Every song rocks and the riffs of Mike Orlando really make this album. Of course, Mike Portnoy’s drums are excellent, and Russell Allen’s vocals are top-notch, but it is Orlando’s fret work that really surprised me.
The opening number “Undaunted” (see video below) has a very modern feel that sounds like a blend of Godsmack and Disturbed. This is a heavy tune, and deserves a place on rock radio everywhere.
The next two tracks “Psychosane” and “Indifferent” are amongst my favorites on Omertà. “Psychosane” is a pretty catchy headbanger. When Orlando cuts loose on this song, look out! There are some impressive riffs on this tune. I liked the use of the voice coder too.
“Indifferent”isn’t quite as heavy as “Undaunted” or “Psychosane”, but it still a great song, and ought to be released as a single by Adrenaline Mob.
While “All On The Line” is one of the slower songs on Omertà, it might be the best song I have heard in 2012. This ought to be a huge hit for Adrenaline Mob.
The lyrics on “Feelin’ Me” are kind of silly (The main lyric is “Are you mother fuckers Feeeeeeeeeeeeelin Me”), but I still don’t dislike this song. It still rocks.
I have to admit that I am not a big fan of the Duran Duran song “Come Undone”. This song has been covered by far too many bands already, and I didn’t like it that much when Duran Duran did it. Adrenaline Mob’s version of this cover features the monster vocals of Lzzy Hale (from Halestorm). While this version is pretty cool, I still don’t love this song. Lzzy’s vocals do make it listenable though.
“Believe Me” is another song that falls into that modern hard rock style. It is Mike Orlando’s riffs that takes this song up a couple notches. If it wasn’t for his riffs, this song might get lost in a sea of modern rock sound alike tunes that you hear on most FM rock radio stations.
Another stand out tune is “Angel Sky”. This song has it all. Big riffs, big vocals, and yet it is probably the least heavy of all of the songs on Omertà. Russell Allen’s vocals truly shine on “Angel Sky”.
The bottom line – Omertà is easily one of the best hard rock releases this year, will easily find its way into my top 10 at the end of 2012. Don’t miss this!
You can pick up a copy of Omertà at this link!
Rating: Out of 10
04. All On The Line
05. Hit The Wall
06. Feelin’ Me
07. Come Undone
08. Believe Me
09. Down To the Floor
10. Angel Sky
11. Freight Train
Adrenaline Mob is:
Russell Allen – vocals
Mike Portnoy – drums
Mike Orlando – guitars, bass
Although lead singer Joe Leste has put together a whole new incarnation of Bang Tango and remains the only original member of the group, the sound of sleaze rock is still strong on their latest effort, Pistol Whipped In The Bible Belt. As an added bonus, the new disc really kicks some hard rock ass! If you like your rock hard, sleazy, and mired in sex, drugs, and rock and roll, then Pistol Whipped In The Bible Belt is an album that should be added to your collection.
“Dick In The System” starts the record off. This song is an ode to a cheating girl, and sets the table for the sleazy sex tinged portraits painted on the rest of the record. Crunchy guitar and throaty, raspy vocals dominate, making the song enjoyable from the first note. Leste and company found a groove and used it to their advantage. “Dick In The System” is a great lead track and a perfect re-introduction to those of us who may have almost forgotten about the band, Bang Tango.
The band doesn’t just mire all of their tracks in sleaze and sex (not that there is anything wrong with that). They also show off their softer side on the album’s lone ballad “Have You Seen Her?” This is a solid, 80s style ballad that is bound to have cigarette lighters waving when the song is played in concert. Guitarist Scott LaFlamme handles the guitar work exceptionally well and his solo on this track stands out. I expect a lot of summer compilations to include “Have You Seen Her?” on the track list.
“Boom Box Séance” is without a doubt the best track on the record. Totally cool, unique title notwithstanding, this song is fantastic. Combining fresh, tongue-in-cheek lyrics with the best guitar work of the record, “Boom Box Séance” is invigorating in its ability to maintain originality. The underlying theme of sleaze is still present and accounted for, but the entire vibe of the song has a fresh feel not present on the other tracks. That does not mean the other tracks are bad, it just solidifies why “Boom Box Séance” is the best song on the record. If you like a foot stomping, funk and groove rock song, “Boom Box Séance” will be your choice for song of the record as well.
It’s been a while since Bang Tango was a common household name (okay, it’s been a while since some people might have heard of the band), but that doesn’t mean that they have been stale or disappeared. Pistol Whipped In The Bible Belt is a strong effort and hopefully Bang Tango will be on the road this summer so that fans can hear the great music Bang Tango recorded. Chock of full of sharp, hard hitting, rock and roll, Pistol Whipped In The Bible Belt is rock music for the sleaze enthusiast. Bring on the strippers and booze!
Rating: Out of 10
- Dick In The System
- Suck It Up
- Our Way
- Bring On The World
- Have You Seen Her
- Live Life
- I Like It
- Boom Box Séance
- Pistol Whipped In The Bible Belt
Bang Tango Is:
Joe Leste – Vocals
Scott LaFlamme – Guitars
Lance Eric – Bass
Trent Anderson – Drums
Elegant, melodic rock is the first impression garnered when listening to On Top Of The World by Coastland Ride. On Top Of The World is the second release from Sweden’s Coastland Ride. Their self titled debut was released in 2003 and the band was finally able to release their sophomore effort late last year thanks to signing a new record deal with Avenue of Allies.
On Top Of The World contains all of the general flavor that one would expect from a melodic rock band. Leaning toward the softer side of rock, Coastland Ride and similar bands of the genre create a sound driven by keyboards and melody. While this is not something a listener will bang a head to, it is still good music to jam when the mood strikes.
Embracing the soft rock sound, Coastland Ride have gone heavy on the keys and melodies for On Top Of The World. Opening track “Act Of Faith (One Million Reasons)” sets the stage for what’s to come. Vocalist Markus Nordenberg’s voice hits the ears immediately and causes a slight smile to form. The smile grows as the album plays on. Songs like “Made Up My Mind” and “Lodestar” are bound to be regular spins once they’ve been heard just once.
“Made Up My Mind” is a terrific song of destiny and overcoming hard times and difficult challenges to achieve goals. There are always times when we want to give up and forget the goal we have in our hearts, but songs like “Made Up My Mind” are a great reminder that we shouldn’t give up and we should always give our all to achieve what our heart desires. A great track, with a solid guitar solo and a strong message, “Made Up My Mind” is one of the best cuts on this album.
The funk and groove of “Lodestar” makes it a stand out track from On Top Of The World. The beat is different from most of the other tracks and really has feet tapping. “Lodestar” is an enjoyable treat with a crisp bass line, tight vocals, and dancing keyboards that make the song come alive. “Lodestar” is certainly a favorite that may find you dancing along while the song plays on.
While it’s been a long time in between albums for Coastland Ride, it hasn’t made the quality of their music suffer. If you’re a fan of the softer side of rock, melodic melodies, or album oriented rock, Coastland Ride’s On Top Of The World is a good addition to your collection.
Rating: Out of 10
Act Of Faith (One Million Reasons)
On Top Of The World
Made Up My Mind
Save You From Yourself
Nail Me To The Cross
Coastland Ride Are:
Anders Rybank – keyboards, guitars, bass, & drums
Mikael Bohlin – keyboards, guitars
Markus Nordenberg – vocals